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  • Epicac - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    I've heard horror stories from Biostar and ECS Motherboard owners. Even a cheap board from either of these manufacturers wouldn't tempt me. Reply
  • StevoLincolnite - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    Peace of mind goes a long way! Reply
  • Snotling - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    I deal toasted PC components every week... motherboards, videocards, DVD players, hard drives. As far as I know they (Biostar) are no worse than Asus or any other actually. for the exception of one biostar Mobo that was DOA I can't remember seeing one that was defective.

    They are great for repairs because you can usually get that 4 year old Biostar Mobo "new" at retailers when all other makers are only available used.
    Reply
  • Olaf van der Spek - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    I've heard horror stories from Asus and Gigabyte owners..... Reply
  • yyrkoon - Sunday, July 22, 2012 - link

    So basically, you're posting only to spread F U D ? I've heard lots of things. That I do not repeat because I have no personal experiences. But along those lines. I suppose any idiot who hasn't a clue how to build a system can relate many horror stories. Hell, when I first started building my own systems back in the early 90's. I completely destroyed a brand new hard disk. By low level formatting the drive from the BIOS.

    Not only that. When ABIT was still in the motherboard business. I had read many "stories" of how people had such a hard time with their boards. Yet . . . I've been a long time ABIT motherboard "fan". Why ? I always knew what to expect from their products, and they were always very stable .

    @Snotling

    Yes, I agree. Except my own personal experiences would leave me to believe that BIOSTAR > Asus. Like you. I received DOA parts. Except it was not just one. It was four in a row through two different dealers.

    Then for personal parts. I will not even touch their budget brand sister company. The reason why is simple. Based on a review from this very same site. I went out and bought a system board for my budget PC. I experienced several problems. Some of which were correctable. Some which were fatal flaws. Such as the PC locking up after 2-5 days ( completely random ). Having spent two weeks on the phone and emailing tech support I called no joy, and started looking for another board. Then wouldn't ya know. when replaced with an ABIT board ( that even cost less ). All the problems went away. That was 6-7 year ago. The system still runs rock solid to this day.

    The last system I built for myself was based on an ABIT IP35-E motherboard. This system is also running to this day. Zero crashes, unless I was doing something I should not have been doing. Such as pushing an overclock too far . . .

    So yeah I am a bit biased when it comes to name brands. I would never touch asrock, unless a customer insisted. I do not use Asus motherboards in any of my own systems, and strongly recommend against customers using them( if asked ). However. My own personal laptop is branded Asus . . . and I love it. Go figure lol.
    Reply
  • AVP - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    I've had better luck with biostar than abit or asus. Reply
  • Wixman666 - Monday, July 23, 2012 - link

    I've sold plenty of every type of board under the sun over the years and Biostar boards are no worse than any other as far as QC goes. ECS are the worst however, historically speaking, on their budget line at least. Reply
  • najames - Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - link

    I built an ECS AMD socket 754 system, sent it to my brother years ago, and they are still using it today.

    The best motherboard I've ever owned since the mid 80s has been a little Biostar T series board with a dinky AMD dual core, happily overclocked if asked. I reluctantly sent it to my nephew when his system crapped out and he is still using it today AFAIK.

    My current collection of Asus, Gigabyte, and Intel boards are no better/worse. They likely just have some better features.
    Reply
  • ggathagan - Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - link

    While most motherboard makers have had periods of bad QC, the chipset involved always has to figure into the mix, whether you look at stability or flakiness.

    Without factoring that into the equation, one bad experience with a big name brand is no more indicative that a rock-solid experience with a lesser-known brand.

    The fact that everyone (chip designers, fab work, motherboard makers and end-users) is always pushing for more performance in shorter spans of time does no one any favors, but we all persist in that approach.

    As such QC history can vary widely at any company.
    Reply
  • johnsmith9875 - Saturday, August 11, 2012 - link

    I tossed my flaky, cranky genuine intel board and bought a biostar and haven't looked back since.

    I think Biostar has improved significantly over the years, its no longer down there in PCChips territory.
    Reply
  • Patflute - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    ... Reply
  • Olaf van der Spek - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    Are fan headers expensive or what? Is it too much to ask for 2 headers top-left and 2 headers bottom-right? Ideally PWM, but anything is better than nothing. Reply
  • yyrkoon - Sunday, July 22, 2012 - link

    Fan headers require traces on the motherboard PCB. That is more expense. Plus additional PWM costs. Not sure exactly how motherboard manufactures achieve this. A few embedded projects of my own. The MCU may have 1-2 PWM I/O pins. After which any other PWM output I would require, would/could require external PWM controllers. More code for me to write. Then more work for my friend ( electronics engineer ) to figure what all is needed. Plus design the given circuits.

    Once that is figured into the cost. the cost of actual PCB layout will probably be much more. Since good electronics engineers typically cost $100/hr ( or more ) in labor and other additional costs. I am no electronics engineer, but I do know that you have to be very careful with consumer products such as these. Putting a power trace in the wrong spot. Could make a good reliable board, into something less desirable.
    Reply
  • room200 - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    Asus, Biostar, ECS, etc. all have had nightmare motherboards in the past. I've used them all, and I can't say one is any better than the other. I bought this board for 15 bucks at Microcenter, and have had no problems at all with it. Reply
  • room200 - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    I meant 115 bucks. Reply
  • blppt - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    It isn't going to excite any gamers, but the Biostar P43 mobo with a Q6600 in my parents' computer has been up 200+ days of near constant usage now without a reboot (win7 64), and they don't even have a UPS (it only ever gets rebooted for a critical patch or when the power goes out). And they don't just surf the web---my father has become addicted to Skyrim and Kingdoms of Amalur. So, it may not be the most featured robust over clocking board I've ever seen, but it sure is rock-stable. Reply
  • Kent_Diego - Sunday, July 22, 2012 - link

    The difference between a premium manufacturer and low end is support. By support I mean BIOS updates that fix bugs, add new CPU models, and improve compatibility. I once bought a Foxconn motherboard. It had a few issues and they never released a new BIOS. I have a Biostar motherboard and they kept it supported for two years before the BIOS updates stopped. When I wrote them ab email I got a reply in broken English from an engineer there. Not as good a ASUS but better than ECS. Reply
  • Grok42 - Sunday, July 22, 2012 - link

    I'd love to hear from anyone that is considering building a rig now or in the future and has the need or desire to put a PCI board in it. Not only can I not think of a reason, I haven't found a reason for at least the last 8 years. Since MBs started putting audio and network on-board I haven't used expansion slots at all PCI-E or PCI with the exception of a discrete graphics card. Reply
  • yyrkoon - Sunday, July 22, 2012 - link

    DVR boards would be one reason. Reply
  • blppt - Monday, July 23, 2012 - link

    My X-Fi XtremeGamer is PCI, and there haven't been any notable advancements in gaming audio tech worth replacing it with IMHO.

    That said, if an attractive mobo came along, would I rule it out because of that sound card? Probably not---I'd rather be happy with the mobo and just buy a PCI-E x1 replacement from ASUS or Creative.

    I'd stick with onboard, but the analog outs on most motherboards are terribly noisy IME.
    Reply
  • pandemonium - Monday, July 23, 2012 - link

    http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=22297...

    If there wasn't anyone in the world that needed a PCI expansion slot, I highly doubt all the major manufacturers would continue to have them available on most of the boards produced today...
    Reply
  • Grok42 - Wednesday, July 25, 2012 - link

    Good link. So looks like sound card, video capture and network in order of most to least common. I would love it if Anandtech would perform a double blind listening test of discrete cards Vs. on board ones. Video capture cards are certainly a good use but aren't most HD quality ones PCI-E? Using either type of slot for network is odd outside of a very niche application.

    All that said, I think I would prefer to have at least one PCI-E 1x slot just in case something broke on the board so I could fix it with a cheap 1x NIC or sound card. I still can't think of *any* reason for two old PCI slots this board has.
    Reply
  • Darth_Bob - Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - link

    I may be the only Biostar fan here lol. Ive used them for my last 2 builds. Used to have a 775 with Q9550 - nice OC for about 2.5 years, never a hiccup, still have it. Currently have an i5 3770 on this same board. Never had bad luck, do just fine with overclocking. I've had much worse luck with other brands.
    It's nice to see them grace the good pages of Anandtech.
    Reply
  • ggathagan - Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - link

    Ian, I like generally your writing, but for the love of all that is good and grammatical, can you PLEASE spend more time on wrapping up loose ends?
    You have a habit of missing important parts of sentences.
    Words like "not" and "can", while very short, have a lot of impact on your articles.

    Under the "Visual Inspection" section:

    "In terms of fan headers, Biostar have unfortunately put much effort in here, with only three to play with - a 4-pin CPU fan header to the top right of the socket, and two 3-pin at the south end of the board."

    I'm thinking you meant something along the lines of ...Biostar have unfortunately not put much effort in here...

    Last page:

    "Motherboards can relatively straightforward and a joy to work with..."

    How about: Motherboards can be relatively straightforward and a joy to work with...

    Bios page:
    "This so far has worked in all testing, albeit even with a hint of instability."

    I can't tell if you mean there is a hint of instability or there is not.

    This so far has worked in all testing, albeit with a hint of instability.

    or

    This so far has worked in all testing, without even a hint of instability.

    I make these comments as constructive criticism.
    Sweating the details is what separates good from mediocre writing.
    Reply
  • IanCutress - Monday, July 30, 2012 - link

    Please note that these articles to go through two pairs of eyes several times before posting. Writing 12k+ words a week isn't easy, especially if you consider 'variances of understanding'. As a Brit, I constantly have to ensure I do not use contractions, and that all my company names are singular, otherwise I get slammed in the comments for not being in an American style. If you see anything worthy of note that needs changing and wish me to change it, please email at ian [at] anandtech [dot] com.

    Ian
    Reply
  • TuFur - Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - link

    I don't know what is up with Biostar. I just returned a TA970XE motherboard because of instability. It started by recognizing my Phenom II 965 as a tri-core processor. Then it would only run two sticks of memory in the auxiliary memory sockets. My diamond 650 TV tuner wouldn't work with my amd 6850 video card. The clincher after a week with this board was it not recognizing my SSD boot drive consistently. And there is no bios update since 2/22/12 when the board was released. I traded it for an Asus M5A88-v-evo and haven't looked back. The new board installed without any problems and is fully functional with my SSD drive, TV tuner and 6850 card. I also saved $20 on an open box. Reply
  • jonjonjonj - Thursday, October 25, 2012 - link

    i would never click a 'Install Everything' button to install garbage on a mb dvd. im going to go download each individual driver and make sure its the lastest one. so i know im only installing the ones i actually need. i like knowing exactly whats being install but thats just me. im anal about that stuff. Reply

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